Posts Tagged ‘Ed Atkeson’

The Marvelous Bread & Puppet Theater

Friday, October 19th, 2012

Bread and Puppet Theater

Story by Ed Atkeson
Photographs by Cathy Frank

Throughout the ’80s and ’90s the Bread and Puppet Theater’s Domestic Resurrection Circus festival was a regular part of our summer. 1998 was the last year for the big fest, and we hadn’t gone since then. Then this last August we made the trek up to Glover in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom.

I am happy to report that everything is as it was. The Museum is still there. There is a big new theater. Peter Schumann is baking bread, creating plays and walking on his tall stilts in the Circus. On the weekends in July and August, there is a Friday night drama in the new theater, and the Circus and Pageant is on Sunday.

It’s wonderful.

It’s incredible.

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LIVE: Firlefanz Puppets @ Albany Center Gallery, 12/2/11

Tuesday, December 13th, 2011

“Ed Atkeson’s Firlefanz Puppets: An Art Show About Puppets” is a fascinating exhibition by local artist/puppet master Ed Atkeson, currently on view at Albany Center Gallery through Saturday (December 17). Also included in the exhibit are photographs of the puppets and puppet performances by Timothy Cahill.

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Ed Atkeson’s Firlefanz Puppets on Exhibit & in Performance @ Albany Center Gallery

Thursday, December 1st, 2011
Cheney, Condi, Bush, Ashcroft, and Rummy from 'Right in the Oval Office" (photo by Ed Atkeson)

Cheney, Condi, Bush, Ashcroft, and Rummy from 'Right in the Oval Office" (photo by Ed Atkeson)

Artist Ed Atkeson launched his love affair with puppets in 2004 with the premiere of “Right in the Oval Office,” a one-act political satire by Gene Mirabelli that was staged at Firlefanz Gallery, the now sadly defunct art gallery that Atkeson operated with his wife, Cathy Frank on Lark Street in Albany.

He designed and built the puppets and gathered a collective of artists, poets, dancers, musicians and other like-minded folks to act as the voices and puppeteers. Thus was born Firlefanz Puppets with a mission of proving that puppets aren’t just for kids.

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ArtBeat: Ed Atkeson’s Firlefanz Puppets @ Albany Center Gallery, 11/8/11

Monday, November 7th, 2011
Firlefanz Puppets: Oakley Hall III’s Ubu Rex  (photo by Timothy Cahill)

Firlefanz Puppets: Oakley Hall III’s Ubu Rex (photo by Timothy Cahill)

“It’s an art exhibit.”

“No, it’s a puppet show.”

Wait! You’re both right. It’s an art exhibit and a puppet show.

Artist Ed Atkeson launched his love affair with puppets in 2004 with the premiere of “Right in the Oval Office,” a short political comedy by Gene Mirabelli that was staged at the beloved and now sadly defunct Firlefanz Gallery on Lark Street in Albany. He designed and built the puppets from scratch and gathered an ensemble of artists, poets, dancers, musicians and other like-minded folks to act as the voices and puppeteers. Thus was born Firlefanz Puppets, and Atkeson was off and running.

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LIVE: Discard Avant Garb @ Grand Street Community Arts, 9/10/11

Friday, September 16th, 2011
Discard Avant Garb 2011 (photo by Ed Atkeson)

(photo by Ed Atkeson)

Once again, Discard Avant Garb’s charity fundraising Recycled Fashion Show outdid itself.

Each year, we walk out after the show thinking, “Well, they won’t be able to top that next year.” And every year, they do just that.

It’s Nippertown’s hippest and most fun annual art party – at least we hope it’s annual again after taking a year off in 2010. While the party at Grand Street Community Arts in Albany went on for about three and a half hours, the fashion show itself lasted only 50 minutes. But what a wild and wonderful 50 minutes they were.

With Chris Harvey’s hot-green bamboo installation and an array of Dennis Herbert’s surreal box assemblages serving as a backdrop, the never-demure Mary Panza once again served as Emcee from Hell, detailing the recycled ingredients of each outfit and often chastising the models as they strutted their stuff upon the runway.

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LIVE: RPM Puppet Conspiracy @ Grand Street Community Arts, 6/22/11

Monday, June 27th, 2011
RPM Puppet Conspiracy

RPM Puppet Conspiracy

It was a perfect evening of underground art at Grand Street Community Arts in Albany.

Bands (performance artists) Brief Bouts of SPIMES (Calamity Noise Implosions & Yeti Grunts) and Redefined Arguments (Ascended-Master gluon plasma rock: Big sound, small people) played short sets, then the RPM Puppet Conspiracy presented a fast-paced little sci-fi story, “The Standard Model.” Based in Chicago or Vermont (Angela was vague), RPMPC is David Bailey and Angela DiVeglia, and they’re winding up a six-week tour that covered half the U.S.

The play is a cleverly super-charged story of space creatures and lost eyeglasses, laser bombs, end of the universe, etc. I had fun. Great venue. Good attitude. Heck of a nice way to spend a Wednesday night.

Review and photograph by Ed Atkeson

LIVE: C. Ryder Cooley’s “Xmalia” @ Club Helsinki, 5/26/11

Monday, June 13th, 2011
C. Ryder Cooley (photo by Ed Atkeson)

C. Ryder Cooley (photo by Ed Atkeson)

It was a wonderfully strange and utterly captivating evening, to be sure. Describing it, however, is more than a bit challenging…

A musical episode of “Twilight Zone”?
An animal opera by the Incredible String Band?
A surreal mash-up of Charlie Chaplin and Cirque du Soleil?

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LIVE: Bread & Puppet Theater @ Time + Space Limited, 3/10/11

Friday, March 11th, 2011

The Bread And Puppet Theater

The arrival of Bread & Puppet Theater’s hand-painted old school bus in Hudson is one of the true harbingers of spring – like robins on your front yard, crocuses poking their heads up through the snow and the opening of The Snowman in Troy.

The seven-member troupe pulled into Time + Space Limited in Hudson on Thursday for their 13th annual spring appearance there. Wrapping up a southern tour, T+SL is the final stop before they head home to Glover, Vermont.

This time around, they’re presenting “The Decapitalization Cabaret,” an hour-long romp of funky political vaudeville featuring a variety of skits, songs, dances and a bit of audience interaction. And on Thursday’s opening night performance, they kicked it off with decapitation as well as decapitalization, as a trio of headless capitalists in business suits and briefcases kicked up their heels in a dance mourning their loss of profits, as well as their heads.

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